JACKSON, Mich. (AP) - Consumers Energy is speeding up its plan to update electric meters for homes and businesses across Michigan.

The CMS Energy Corp. unit says it plans to update 1.8 million electric meters and 600,000 natural gas meters by the end of 2017. That's two years earlier than it originally scheduled. The new meters let customers track their energy use online.

A Consumers Energy vice president says growing customer interest caused the company to shorten the timeline. He says it has started updating meters in western Michigan and will be updating meters in other regions by the middle of 2015.

It also plans to launch a new system for outage notifications in 2016.

More than 275,000 western Michigan residents and small business owners have gotten meter updates since summer 2012.

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