One thing that Google is quite adamant on is making sure that you’re using a browser they officially support, and more times than not Opera users are left in the dark. The new Gmail interface is no exception. If you try visiting the email service in Opera you’ll be forced to use the old-school version of Gmail that doesn’t have color-coded labels, among other things.
If you’re using Opera 9.5 Beta you’ll be happy to know that the new Gmail works pretty well… if you know how to get to it. We’ve previously talked about how you can bypass browser detection in Gmail, and it’s as simple as pointing Opera to:
You’ll also want to bookmark that URL so that you have quick access to it in the future, but by using that you should be able to gain access to what’s commonly called Gmail 2. If you don’t see the new stuff right away you’ll want to click the “Newer Version” link in the upper-right corner.
I’m sure many of you are wondering why the heck Google is blocking Opera from using the new interface if it works so well. First off the current stable build of Opera (version 9.27) has some serious issues with Gmail 2. I couldn’t even compose a message using it. Opera 9.5 is a heck of a lot better, but that’s still in Beta, and so Google isn’t going to officially support that yet. Although even in Opera 9.5 Beta the contact manager doesn’t work quite right.
Unfortunately fixing the remaining Gmail 2 problems lies in the hands of the Opera developers, because Google obviously doesn’t see enough value in making their services fully compatible with Opera. The main functionality works fine in Opera 9.5 Beta, but you’ll have to remember to use the special URL above if you want to get the latest and greatest Gmail 2 features.
Thanks for the tip Cody!