Samsung Galaxy Core Prime review

It's busy at the bottom, and the Core Prime struggles to stand out.

Samsung Galaxy Core review

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One of the Samsung Galaxy Core Prime's key selling points is its relatively compact build and display, which some would call small. Samsung calls it "well-balanced," and I'm inclined to agree.

The Galaxy Core Prime's 4.5-inch screen proves more practical than most for single-handed usage. There remains a certain tactile appeal to pulling out your phone, unlocking it, and firing off a quick email with a single hand and minimal finger contortions.

Samsung Galaxy Core Prime review

Just follow our advice and swap out the default Samsung keyboard early doors, OK? It's ugly, there's no readily accessible comma button, and fans of joined-up typing systems will be left frustrated.

The other headline boast from Samsung relates to the Galaxy Core Prime's 4G connectivity. At the very bottom end of the market it's still common to see 3G-only phones that can't take advantage of the UK's belatedly expanding next-gen (surely current-gen by now?) mobile network standard.

The Galaxy Core Prime accessed my town's 4G network as easily as flagship smartphones worth five times the price, like the iPhone 6S. Both connections are download-munchingly strong in the town centre and barely clinging on for life in the 'burbs.

Of course, all features great and small should be cast in the context of the Samsung Galaxy Core Prime's price. It costs around £110 (US$170) up front, and in the UK Carphone Warehouse is offering it for free on a £13.50-per-month two year O2 contract at the time of writing.

Samsung Galaxy Core Prime review

That's pretty good for what's on offer, but you can do better. We've already mentioned the second generation Motorola Moto E and its sharper display, and you can pick one of those up for less.

Then there's the WileyFox Swift at £130, complete with a more attractive design and a superior display. Or the sub-£100 EE Harrier Mini with its stock Android OS and Wi-Fi calling provision.

For a little more money, meanwhile, there's the third generation Motorola Moto G for £150 (US$180) – a far better phone in most departments.

While value initially appears to be a big selling point, then, the Galaxy Core Prime's price turns out to be nothing to write home about.