Arduino able to pick up and interpret SMS messages

Hello, I'm looking into using an arduino to, as the title says, receive sms messages and act accordingly. Now the acting accordingly part is pretty easy. I want to be able to send the arduino an SMS message with a number. It will then turn on one of the power outputs to 5v to power a usb cable for a number of minutes, the number being what was texted to it, and return an error message if the SMS was more than just a number. Easy enough. What I'm interested in is if there is any way to make receiving and interpreting the SMS messages completely independent of anything besides the board itself. Not big into shields and I'm not sure if there would be one out there made for that, nor would I know where to look. Thanks in advance.

I'm afraid you will have to use a shield or some other external device for SMS receive and transmit as the arduino doesn't have the RF capability.

Look for "arduino GSM shield" eg http://www.arduino.cc/en/Main/ArduinoGSMShield

GSM shield will do what you want or the sim 900 module both on ebay £12 - £30 ish

I have used a sim900 on my hot tub controller project , seems to be working ok , can send and receive

a problem I came across was the size of the receive buffer in the arduino software , which is defaulted to 64 bytes, the SMS come in quickly and sometimes overloads the buffer resulting in data loss.

the header to the SMS includes the senders number , date, time, offset etc, so you end up with 10 or 12 characters if the buffer overflows

there is a solution , apparently you can go into the core files and adjust the buffer setting to 255 bytes

as I only send short commands, I have not done this but apparently its quite easy to achieve.

^ Ditto on the GSM/GPRS shield approach.

I have a SEEED Setudios GPRS Shield I have been playing with..

easy set-up..

send/receive data out of the box with example sketches.

problem (I guess) is.. you need an activated SIM card for it to work of course.. which comes along with a monthly fee..etc

@sureview - thanks for the note about the buffer.. I havent reached that wall yet.. but good to know about it anyways.