- Ad-free email
- Vast number of features
- Clean design
- No end-to-end encryption
- Based in Australia
- Customer support
Fastmail wants to shape a future where people come first and, contrary to other email providers, put your priorities ahead of advertising companies. Created in 1999, Fastmail is a paid email provider but it doesn't sell your data to companies that want to target ads to you. Besides the thorough email inbox, Fastmail provides an integrated calendar and a contact list, becoming essentially three apps in one. Prices start at $2.50 per month with an annual billing cycle, though the most basic plan does not include all the features this email provider has to offer. Fortunately, Fastmail comes with a 30-day free trial to test out the higher tier plans of the product before purchasing.
Fastmail comes with thorough email features that let you do everything you need, while still offering a user-friendly and straightforward interface.
When it comes to the interface, you can define the layout through the five themes available as well as hide the reading panel. Depending on your taste, you can choose between group messages or have each email displayed separately. You can also pin emails to have the most important message at the top of the inbox, create different folders, email rules, and attach emails. Speaking of attachments, Fastmail has a built-in storage space where you can upload any document from your computer to use it as an attachment later. Besides that, it's also possible to attach files from Dropbox too.
Fastmail has a snooze option that can be enabled when you need to focus on the task at hand or you have the option to schedule it ahead of time. Though, if you are going to be away from email for a longer period, you can always leave an out-of-office message. On top of that, if you ever send an email by accident you’re given 15 seconds to press the undo-send button, and it's like it never happened.
Thorough Built-In Calendar
The built-in calendar is a solid feature. The interface is clean and easy to use, and it's possible to add calendar subscriptions such as the ones that will automatically insert all holidays for the entire year. On top of that, it's possible to create multiple calendars that can be seen as a group or separately and enable multiple time zone support.
Privacy & Security
Fastmail states that its users' data is always private, which seems to be a little bit of a stretch in our opinion. Though we believe Fastmail won't sell the users' data to advertisers, it does not provide end-to-end encryption.
This information can also be shared with third-party companies that help Fastmail to manage its business. Though it needs your consent to do so, and the email provider works hard to keep your information away from unauthorized access and destroys the data when it's no longer needed.
Fastmail is available for desktop through its browser version and has apps for both Android and iOS. Unfortunately, there is no software available for desktop. However, it's possible to integrate your Fastmail email with other email applications such as Outlook.
The mobile version of Fastmail comes with the full pack of features that you get on desktop. You will be able to do everything on your mobile phone, from sending emails to setting up your out-of-office alert. More impressive than that is the way Fastmail can maintain the clean design and user-friendliness with the mobile app, even when offering so many features. Nevertheless, although we do understand that the mobile app doesn’t have the option to change the layout, it would be nice to have the options to change the theme – we’d especially like to see a dark mode in the future.
Fastmail comes with three different plans that you can choose from – Basic, Standard, and Professional. With Basic, you already get the ad-free email usage, calendar, contact list, mail import, and expert support. However, to get the most out of Fastmail, you will have to upgrade to the higher tiers.
One big difference is the amount of storage you get. While on Basic you only get 2GB, with Standard the amount grows to 25GB, and Professional to 125GB. Other differences between Basic and Standard are the possibility of using the snooze option, group calendars, and getting your own personal domain. Finally, Professional brings some administrative features since it's targeted for teams of five or more.
If you decide to go for an annual subscription Basic will cost $2.5 per month and the Standard version $4.17, saving you around 17% every single month. Better yet, Fastmail offers a 30-day free trial so users can try the product before committing to a purchase.
Although Fastmail runs on a customer-centric strategy, for a paid service, the customer service is not excellent. It does not offer 24/7 support or live chat. Moreover, though present on Facebook, there is no way of contacting through Messenger. However, the company is active on Twitter and addresses users' issues there.
Besides Twitter, the only way to get help is through the FAQ page or by submitting a ticket. We do have to say that the FAQ page is meticulous, and you will find most of your questions answered there. From common issues to security, Fastmail tries to answer all users' needs with a quick search without the need to even send an email.
Fastmail is indeed a great email provider packed full of features. Both the browser version and the mobile apps are straightforward and will let you do everything you need from an email provider. However, security-wise, there are better options in the industry. Not only does Fastmail not offer end-to-end encryption, but it's also based in Australia, a country that is part of the Five Eyes intelligence alliance. Nevertheless, it's still more private than Gmail or Yahoo without losing any critical features. As a paid product, we believe that Fastmail should have more channels to contact customer support, even if the FAQ page explains most of the service. In the end, if you are looking for an email provider that will protect your messages from one end to another, Fastmail is not the provider for you. However, if you’re looking for an ad-free email, with all the features you can think of, Fastmail may be just the email service for you.