The NanoPi NEO Core2 as its name tells is an alternative NanoPi NEO2 that works like a CPU board with male pin-headers. It has the same form facotor as the NanoPi NEO2, same pin descriptions and works with all the OS images the NanoPi NEO2 supports. The connectors and ports on the NEO2 are populated to pin-headers on the NEO2 Core. In addition the NEO Core2 can have an optional onboard eMMC flash and ESD protection for connectors and ports. There features are highly preferred by industrial customers.
The NEO2 Core uses a popular Allwinner H5 SoC and has onboard 1G DDR3 RAM. FriendlyElec offers models with three eMMC options: 8GB(default)/16GB/32GB. FriendlyElec migrated UbuntuCore with mainline kernel 4.11 for it. It works with other OS such as Armbian as well. Compared to the NanoPi NEO2 the NanoPi NEO Core2 runs more reliably with much less overheat. It is a good platform for IoT applications, mornitoring systems, smart control systems, cluster computing and AI applications.