HEIC or JPEG, Which iPhone Photo Format Should I Choose [Ultimate Guide]

Last Updated on February 28, 2023 by Peter Wood

Since iOS 11, Apple has introduced a new iPhone photo format, HEIC file format for iOS devices. HEIC is more efficient when it comes to the file size while keeping the same image quality compared to JPG. When you take some Live Photos, animations sequence, and burst photo shots, you should find the photos in HEIC. If you want to learn more details about the iPhone photo formats, and how to open and convert HEIC files, it is the ultimate guide you should know.

How to Open HEIC File

Part 1. What are the iPhone Photo Formats?

What are the iPhone photo formats? The latest iPhone models can save photos in PNG, JPG, and HEIC in different situations. PNG is the screenshot photo format on iPhones. JPG and HEIC are the photo formats captured on iPhone. All this applies to the iPad as well.

Why does Apple use different formats for screenshots and photos? It is because screenshots are often of web content, which has text. The PNG format does better in such cases although it generates a larger file size.

Live Photo is the new feature since iOS 9. Unlike still photos, it captures animated images along with the audio. Therefore, it is more similar to a video. If you transfer iPhone Live Photos to PC or social media, they will become still.

When it comes to the photo formats that iPhone supports, PNG, JPG, GIF, and HEIC are available natively.

Different File Format for iPhone

Part 2: The Guide of iPhone Photo File Size

The file size is the major reason why Apple developed the new iPhone photo format HEIC for iOS. JPG is small in file size compared to PNG, GIF, and more, but it still takes a lot of space. Since Apple does not provide an SD card for iPhone or iPad, which means all photos have to save on the Internal memory.

The photo file size almost determines the number of images that you can save on an iPhone. HEIC, on the other hand, compresses photos with advanced technology and produces a smaller file size compared to JPG while keeping the same quality.

How to Set HEIC as Photo Format on iPhone

Step 1: Open the Settings app from your home screen on your iPhone.

Step 2: Tap on your name and choose the Camera option from the drop-down list to choose the desired iPhone picture photo, HEIC or JPEG, which is the sixth entity.

Step 3: Choose the Formats option and select High Efficiency. Now the photos you take on iPhone will be saved in HEIC format. If you need to share your photos on social media, switch to Most Compatible as JPEG.

Note: Once you change iPhone photo formats to JPG, the new photos will take as twice space as HEIC. So you’d better make sure that your iPhone has enough space.

Choose HEIC as iPhone Format

Part 3: How to Open and Convert HEIC iPhone Photos

The new iPhone picture format HEIC performs well on iPhone, iPad, and Mac, but it does not compatible with most software and systems. How to view HEIC on Windows or convert HEIC to TIFF/JPEG/GIF? If you have already taken photos in HEIC, WidsMob HEIC is an all-in-one HEIC viewer and converter to manage different iPhone photo files. It enables you to view HEIC, Live Photos, animations sequence, and burst photo shots. Moreover, you can also rotate images, resize files and convert HEIC/HEIF.

  1. Convert iPhone photo format to JPG, PNG, GIF, and TIFF files in batch.
  2. Open and view HEIC and JPEG in both thumbnail and full screen easily.
  3. Provide basic photo editing features to rotate and resize the HEIC files.
  4. Support HEIC, Live Photos, animation sequence, and burst photo shots.
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How to View and Batch Convert HEIC Images

Step 1: Launch WidsMob HEIC once you have installed the program on your computer. It is available to both PC and Mac. Click on the Import button in the home interface and select the HEIC images. Alternatively, drag and drop the HEIC images into the interface from the Explorer window.

Add HEIC Photos

Step 2: Once you have imported the HEIC files, you can directly view the HEIC files in thumbnail. When you want to view the details of the HEIC image, you only need to double-click the file to open the HEIC in full screen. Then you can use the slider to browse all files within the same folder.

Open HEIC in Windows

Step 3: Click one HEIC image in the library panel and then you will get the editing tools on the very right side. To rotate HEIC, for example, select the Rotate tool and then choose Rotate left, Rotate right, or 180 to change the orientation. Moreover, you can also resize the iPhone photos.

Step 4: When HEIC editing is done, click the Start convert button at the bottom right corner to open the convert dialog. Click the Folder button and select a specific folder and pull down the Format option and select JPG or PNG. Click the Export button to begin converting iPhone photo formats.

Convert HEIC to PNG WidsMob

Note: To maintain the EXIF data, uncheck the box next to Discard meta data. Then decide whether to overwrite the original photos.

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Part 4: FAQs about iPhone Photo Format

1Can I Change iPhone Screenshot Format?

By default, iPhone saves screenshots as PNG files. But different from taking shots on iPhone, you cannot change the screenshot format. The only way to change screenshots to other formats is to choose another camera application to take photos.

2Should I Choose HEIC Instead of JPG?

Yes. HEIC is better than the JPG file format. Not only is the file size half that of a standard JPG, but also the similar image quality. The major drawback of HEIC is the compatibility issue. Of course, you only need to choose the HEIC viewer to open all iPhone picture formats.

3How to Keep HEIC Form When Transferring iPhone Photos?

To keep the metadata of the HEIC files as well as the original photo quality of iPhone photo formats, go to the Settings app and select the Photos option. Scroll down to the Transfer to Mac or PC section. Then you can choose the Keep Originals option.


Here is the ultimate guide about what iPhone photo formats are available and why iOS uses different formats in various situations. You can follow the guide and introduction to make the best decision. WidsMob HEIC is the best choice to view, convert, and manage the HEIC files on Windows and Mac. If you have queries about this, you can leave a comment in the article.

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