When it came to choosing a winner, the panel had one clear objective: to assess the networks ‘through the consumer’s eyes.’ The prize had to go to the network offering the best possible service, coverage and price with a strong and engaging message that its customers could identify with. As the challenger brand, Three’s energy has translated into real impact on the consumer. More than 900,000 customers signed up last year, an increase of 11%, and monthly churn has decreased to just 1.5%. An estimated 43% of the UK’s mobile data is carried on its network thanks in no small part to their value-for-money, data-hungry tariffs. The ‘Silly Stuff. It Matters’ ad campaign featuring Socks the pony has had more than 6.5 million hits on YouTube to date, illustrating one judge’s sentiments that the brand had ‘grabbed customer imagination,’ marketing mobile internet perfectly by focusing on the limitless possibilities and fun of sharing content. October 2012 saw the beginning of the Ultrafast upgrade to the Three network and this year it will add 4G capability to its business. The combination of compelling marketing, competitive pricing and improvements to its service, with more on the horizon, makes Three this year’s winner.