BACKGROUND Non-adherence to Antiretroviral Treatment (ART) is strongly associated with virologic rebound and drug resistance. Studies have shown that the most frequently mentioned reason for missing ART doses is the forgetfulness of patients to take their medications on time. Therefore using communication devices as reminder tools, for example alarms, pagers, text messages and telephone calls could improve adherence to ART. The aim of this study is to measure access to cellphones, willingness to receive text message medication reminders and to identify associated factors of ART patients at the University of Gondar Hospital, in North West Ethiopia. METHODS An institution based cross sectional quantitative study was conducted among 423 patients on ART during April 2014. Data were collected using structured interviewer-administered questionnaires. Data entry and analysis were done using Epi-Info version 7 and SPSS version 20 respectively. Descriptive statistics and multivariable logistic regression analysis were used to describe the characteristic of the sample and identify factors associated with the willingness to receive text message medication reminders. RESULTS A total of 415 (98% response rate) respondents participated in the interview. The majority of respondents 316 (76.1%) owned a cellphone, and 161(50.9%) were willing to receive text message medication reminders. Positively associated factors to the willingness were the following: Younger age group (AOR = 5.18, 95% CI: [1.69, 15.94]), having secondary or higher education (AOR = 4.61, 95% CI: [1.33, 16.01]), using internet (AOR = 3.94, 95% CI: [1.67, 9.31]), not disclosing HIV status to anyone other than HCP (Health Care Provider) (AOR = 3.03, 95% CI: [1.20, 7.61]), availability of radio in dwelling (AOR = 2.74 95% CI: [1.27, 5.88]), not answering unknown calls (AOR = 2.67, 95% CI: [1.34, 5.32]), use of cellphone alarm as medication reminder (AOR = 2.22, 95%CI [1.09, 4.52]), and forgetting to take medications (AOR = 2.13, 95% CI: [1.14, 3.96]). CONCLUSIONS A high proportion of respondents have a cell phone and are willing to use it as medication reminders. Age, educational status and using internet were the main factors that are significantly associated with the willingness of patients to receive text message medication reminders.