My Opera Mail pits the browser maker against well-established giants such as Gmail, Microsoft's Live Mail and Yahoo, but Opera's small and fast browsers are popular on mobile devices.
"Our goal is to make a fast and friendly mail service that is efficient and easy to use on any device, whether you prefer to access your email from Opera Mini on a mobile phone (dedicated mobile interface), a tablet with touch interface (large, comfortable buttons) or a desktop computer (extensive keyboard shortcuts)," Borg said.
My Opera Mail is the result of the browser maker's acquisition of FastMail last year.
"Those who have already used FastMail.FM will recognise a few bits and pieces, but major parts of My Opera Mail Beta have been rewritten as an AJAX application to take advantage of modern browsers and speed up the entire experience," Johan Borg, vice president of products and mail, explained in a post on the Opera blog.
My Opera Mail, like Gmail, also includes a conversations view that was intended to be included in Opera's built-in mail client M2, but wasn't ready in time.
"Grouping all messages in a thread as a single page makes even more sense for a web service than a native application, so we decided to put in the extra effort to support conversations across folders on our Cyrus IMAP servers," Borg said.
The webmail includes a spam filter and different themes, but so far doesn't feature folder management, a settings control panel, or support for HTML in messages.
That last feature will "probably someday" arrive, but Borg said his team was focusing on perfecting the system for mobile use first. The My Opera beta features 1GB of storage, but Opera said that would be increased. The My Opera Mail beta is available here.
This article originally appeared at pcpro.co.uk