The Galaxy J2 Core is Samsung’s first Android Go smartphone

While Samsung’s Galaxy series of phones may be better known for representing the super high end of the market with the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Samsung Galaxy Note 9, it’s actually a whole smorgasbord of handsets starting from the cheap J-series. Now there’s a new member of the Samsung Galaxy J family, and it’s running the Oreo flavour of Android Go.

If you’ve been hoping for a Samsung experience with a stripped-down operating system, then there are two reasons why this might not be as exciting as it first sounds.

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Firstly, the Samsung Galaxy J2 Core is only on sale in India and Malaysia for now. Secondly, even if it does ever head west, this isn’t quite the stripped down Android Go experience you might expect: it comes coated in a portion of Samsung’s own UI.

That may sound counter-intuitive for an OS where being lightweight and streamlined is the order of the day. Without benchmarking and feeling how it is, it’s hard to say how much impact these changes make, but it will still come with Google’s range of light apps and optimisations for devices without cutting-edge specifications.

Speaking of specifications, this is what the Galaxy J2 Core has on the inside: an Exynos 7570 processor (which looks to be roughly the equivalent of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 425), 1GB of RAM, 8GB of storage and a 2600mAh battery.

In terms of cameras, it has an 8-megapixel f/2.2 rear camera and a 5-megapixel f/2.2 snapper on the front for selfies – all of which can be viewed on its 5-inch 960 x 540 LCD screen.

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As mentioned before, this is currently exclusive to India and Malaysia, on sale today. I can’t find it listed anywhere, and Samsung doesn’t mention a price, but the slightly better specced J2 goes for 7,690 rupees (~£85) on Flipkart, so you’d imagine somewhere between £50 and £90 for Samsung’s first Android Go offering.

Is there any point to Android Go when it has manufacturer tweaks added? Let us know what you think on Twitter @TrustedReviews.