Apple has begun testing a new beta version of its MobileMe email service late by invitation only. MobileMe is the company’s US$99-per-year suite of Internet tools.

The beta includes several new features for MobileMe users such as the ability to sort mail with server-based rules, a redesigned interface, and SSL security. It also offers three view options: classic (the familiar layout), compact (which hides folders) and widescreen (which shows more of a message).

The beta is open only to English-language MobileMe users. To participate in the beta, people must log into Mail, then click “request an invitation.” Just remember: beta software is unfinished software so use with care.