I look at this as a very gradual process. My husband and I have been reading to our daughter since the day she was born. We started showing her picture books when she was a baby and now we point out animals or objects in her board boards and then I'll point to the word. I know she won't be reading the words herself anytime soon, but I think making her comfortable with the concept is important. Good luck introducing your little one to reading. Let us know how it goes!
Every child's learning process differs from others. Some children learn very early and others learn later. You may help them learn to read byreading books aloud. Don't force your child to read,let your child set his/her own pace and have fun at whatever he/she is doing.
I've been working with my 3yr old niece on picture books, like Emmys_mom. I also got her hooked on that ABCmouse.com it has some wonderful tools and she loves it. I believe they have programs for 2 1/2 yr old and up. Not 100% on that though. Kids are so different from one another my mom taught me from birth to adult to respect books and all they offer so of course I was eager to read by 3. Of course I made up the words, actual reading was a long process. English is one of the hardest languages to learn & understand. I think as long as they have that 'WANT TO' than it's a lot easier. By age 5 I could read simple stuff (See Spot Run) but now a days kids are learning so much more earlier.