HEIC File Extension

A HEIC file contains images to store photos on iOS devices. Images in HEIF (High-Efficiency Image Format) are usually saved in the HEIC file, and it has Metadata that describes the photos.

Today, to save photos on HEIC files, the HEIC extension is needed.

One of the benefits of the HEIC file over other photo formats such as JPEG is that it gives a higher quality image, and it also does that using less space due to its advanced compressive technology.

What is Heic Extension

A HEIC extension is usually a File that contains the Metadata, which describes the size of the image, its resolution, and location, amongst other features.

An alternative name for HEIF is the H.265, a photo storage format to retain the quality of images. This HEIF is even more advanced than JPEG format.

When Apple released iOS 11 in 2017, they created the HEIF as the default photo storage on iOS devices. In this manner, iPads and iPhones began using HEIC files too. Apple also added HEIF support to macOS. In 2018, Microsoft added HEIF to Windows. Also, Google added HEIF to Android.

However, installing HEIC files in Microsoft applications is not the same as using iOS devices.

Users must first manually install the Microsoft HEIF Photo Extensions and other packages like HEVC (High-Efficiency Image Container) Video Extensions from Microsoft Store.

Usually, exporting photos taken on iOS devices to a non-iOS device (like Windows or Android) automatically converts the photo to a JPEG or JPG format. This is the same as uploading a photo on social media.


History of HEIC File

Over the years, HEIC has gained much popularity. MPEG- Moving Picture Experts Group developed the HEIC file format. Apple did not only switch from JPEG to HEIC, but it also improved the ability to save pictures without taking in much space.

HEIC file is now used widely, ranging from personal to professional purposes. Photographers find HEIC excellent and flexible in saving high-resolution photos.

Another fantastic perk of the HEIC file is that, with the HEIC file, you can convert photos in HEIC to GIFs in creating animations.


How to save photos on JPEG Formats Instead of HEIC

To change the format of photos on your iOS device, you should carry out these few steps:


Step 1: Go to ‘Settings’ on your iOS device.

Step 2: Select ‘Camera’

Step 3: Go to ‘Formats’

Step 4: Select ‘Most Compatible’

Automatically, the photos will be saved as JPEG.


Another alternative to setting your iPhone to take photos in JPEG instead of HEIC is to save photos as HEIC and send them as JPG. Here’s how to do this:


Step 1: Open the Settings app

Step 2: Tap on Photos

Step 3: Scroll down to ‘Transfer to Mac or PC section.’

Step 4: Choose ‘Automatic’


How to Open a HEIC File?

Whether using macOS or iOS, you can view all HEIC photos on your IOS when clicking on “Apple Photos.” On your macOS, you can open Apple Precise”. In Windows, you would have to install the Microsoft HEIF Image Extension and HEVC Video Extensions package from Microsoft’s store. Afterward, open it in “Microsoft Photos.” You can open HEIC photos on your Android or Web on Google photos.

To open HEIC files on Windows, you will need to update your Windows to version 18.09 of Windows 10. This will enable you to install the extension tool. HEVC is a significant extension, especially when you want to retain video functionality.


How to Open a HEIC File in Windows 10

There are many ways you can achieve opening a HEIC file on your Windows 10. And because opening a HEIC file can be very frustrating and challenging, you may have to try more than one option. Here are a few things to do to open HEIC files on Windows

1. Add HEIC support through an extension: Ensure that you use Windows 10 version 1809. If you are using a certain lower than this, open the Settings app and click on ‘Update and Security, then click on Windows Update. Afterward, install the Microsoft HEIF Image Extension. If it is not already on your device, you can download it on Microsoft Store. To get the HEVC Video Extension, you would have to incur some costs.

To access the two extensions online, click on ‘Get’ and wait for the installation process to be completed. Use the Windows 10 photos application to open the HEIC files by double-clicking. The HEVC extension will cost about $0.99 to purchase.


2. Reset the Image Extension: If you have installed the extension and it does not work, you can try this option. You can reset the image extension to open HEIC files by:

Step 1: First, go to PC settings

Step 2: Click on ‘Apps and features’

Step 3: Select the HEVC Video Extension or HEIF Image Extension.

Step 4: Click on ‘Advanced options’ among the other options

Step 5: Scroll to “Reset Option’ and click on it.

Step 6: Next, confirm your option, and click on ‘Reset’ again.


If this were the initial problem, this action would reset your extension, and you won’t have any glitch trying to open HEIC files on your Windows 19. Lastly, open the HEIC file using a compatible player.

3. Change iPhone setting before transferring files: Before importing photos, you can visit the Settings and click on the ‘Transfer to Mac or PC’ setting.

Step 1: Go to the settings option.

Step 2: Navigate to photos and click on ‘Transfer to Mac or PC’

Step 3: Click on Automatic


4. Use the Windows plugin: This is an alternative if you have tried the two methods above, and they do not work. With this, you won’t have to edit the file. But, it will allow you are HIC format images to word documents. CopyTrans can allow you to get the Windows plugin on your PC. Download the plugin, and then open the HEIC file.


5. Convert the HEIC file to JPEG or PNG: This is another t. great option. Converting will make it a lot easier to open HEIC files. Converters like CopyTrans can convert multiple files at the same time. Image editors like Photoshop will need you to convert HEIC files to JPEG. The VLC media player is also an excellent option for restoring your HEIC files. To convert HEIC files on VLC Media Player, press Convert on the player to convert from HEIC file format to others.

  1. Go to ‘Media’ on the taskbar.
  2. Select ‘Convert/Save’ among the options.
  3. Pick the file you want to convert, and click on ‘Convert.’
  4. Choose the file format you’d like and click on ‘Save.’
  5. Choose the location/folder to save and click ‘Start’.


How to convert a HEIC File?

Applications like Apple Preview and Apple Photos can convert HEIC files to other formats. In Apple Preview:

  1. Select File
  2. Click on Export

The formats to convert from HEIC File include PNG—Portable Network Graphics, JP2— JPEG 2,000 Core Image, JPG— JPEG Image, TIFF— Tagged Image File Format, PDF— Portable Document Format, EXR— Open EXR Image.

  1. TIFF files is a raster file that gives good qualified images.
  2. GIF files have an 8-bit color that converts images to animated graphics.
  3. PNG Files us the standard for images used on the Web.

Some cloud storage applications, such as Microsoft OneDrive and Dropbox, can automatically convert HEIc files to JPEG.


How to Convert a HEIC File to JPG on Windows using CopyTrans

The first step to converting HEIC files to JPG on your Windows is installing the CopyTrans application. This application comes with an extension that will convert it from HEIC files to JPG.

  1. Locate the photo
  2. Right-click on the image and select Convert to JPEG with CopyTrans.
  3. You’ll see the JPG copy of the pictures.


How to Convert HEIC File to JPG on Windows using iMazing HEIC Converter.

The interface may appear complex with this one, but you’ll have more control over settings, unlike in other ones.

  1. Install the iMazing HEIC Converter app.
  2. Open the application
  3. Drag and drop the photo into the application.
  4. Choose which format you want.
  5. Set the quality slider by dragging.
  6. Click on ‘Convert’
  7. Select the folder where you want to save the JPG on your computer.
  8. Click OK.


How to Convert a HEIC File to JPG on Windows using Preview

Using Preview is a straightforward process.

  1. Open the HEIC file in Preview
  2. Click File and Export
  3. The drop-down options will bring formats. Select one to use.
  4. Save.


How to Convert a HEIC File to JPG on Windows using Photos

On your Mac’s Photos application, below are the steps to convert a HEIC file to JPG on Windows using Photos:

  1. Open the Photos app.
  2. Select the file.
  3. Click on ‘File’ and ‘Export,’ then ‘Export phot.’
  4. Choose the Format
  5. Click on Export.
  6. Choose a folder for storage.


How to Create and Edit a HEIC File

Adobe Photoshop is one of the best to create and edit HEIC images on both Mac and Windows.


On Mac:

  1. First, open your HEIC File.
  2. Go to Edit and select preferences; afterward, click on Camera Raw.
  3. Click on the “File Handling” tab.
  4. You’ll see the JPEG and TIFF box; choose Automatically Open JPEGs and HEICs or click on Automatically open all supported JPEGs and HEICs on the drop-down menu.
  5. Click on Open and then edit your HEIC files.


On Windows:

  1. Download HEVC and HEIC support tools from the Microsoft store.
  2. Restart Photoshop
  3. Click on ‘Import Photos’ to import your HEIC Files.
  4. Then, edit and ‘Save as’ to convert to the format of your choice.


Pros and Cons of HEIC files

Although the HEIC file may appear great because of its high-resolution and small size features, it has some disadvantages. Here, you are going to see some of the Pros and cons of using HEIC files:



  • Small Photo Storage size
  • It can store more than one photo in the folder.
  • It stores image edits.
  • It supports 16-bit color and JPG’s 8-bit



  • It is not compatible with various devices.
  • It is patent and affects other devices that use it.
  • Google Chrome doesn’t support its use.



Using HEIC files may be difficult, but you shouldn’t give up because of its excellent benefits. You may have to keep on trying the different extensions and plugins or call on an expert to help you do this. Professional tools like Photoshop can help you convert the file before making edits. Lastly, the HEIF file is superior to the JPEG in file size, image quality, compression ability, and color depth.

I hope you found this piece helpful.

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Ovo is a highly specialized Computer and Networking Expert with experience in Windows, Cisco, Microsoft Office (Excel, Word, etc) and Networking engineering. Ovo is a creative, team player that loves sharing his experience with technology with readers to follow along. He has great attention to detail when discussing various technologies, tutorials and guides.