The UK government has increased the number of e-voting pilot schemes from six to 17, giving 1.4 million people the option to vote electronically on or before 1 May.
The pilots are using a mix of different e-voting systems. In Ipswich, South Somerset, Norwich, St Albans and Sheffield, a BT-led consortium will be offering the chance to vote either by internet, telephone or SMS.
After the first set of e-voting pilots in May last year, government research revealed deep reservations among the general public.
Of the 2.5 million potential voters at local elections last year, turnout in some areas where electronic methods were used actually fell by 0.4 per cent to 27.6 per cent.
Local government minister Nick Raynsford, who tried out some of the technologies on 7 April, indicated that he was impressed by the systems.
"This year's local elections will ... be the largest test of the government's e-voting plans, positioning the UK as one of the leaders in e-voting in Europe," he said in a statement.
Ipswich Borough Council is one of only two local authorities to introduce pre-registration for e-voting, which closes today.
A spokeswoman explained that the authority is pleased with the current figures for pre-registration, and remains optimistic that the technology will encourage more voters.
"Out of 90,000 voters we have had 7,800 people pre-register for e-voting which is about similar to the number who register for postal votes," she said.
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