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How to Switch From HEIC to JPEG Photos on an iPhone or iPad

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Want to make your iPhone or iPad shoot photos in JPEG format instead of the default HEIC format?

iphone taking photo

If you’ve recently tried to get photos from your iPhone to your computer, you might have had trouble opening them. That’s because some iPhone photos are saved as HEIC files, not JPEG.

HEIC photos save space on your mobile devices, which is why Apple saves your photos in this format. But they aren’t as widely compatible as JPEG files.

Thankfully, you can easily set your iPhone to take photos in JPEG format, so you won’t need to convert files from HEIC ever again. This tutorial will show you just how easy it is to make the switch.


Step 1. Go to Your Camera Settings

To change how your iPhone takes pictures, first head to Settings > Camera to open up the camera settings.

camera settings iphone

Once here, tap Formats to choose how photos are stored on your device.

Step 2. Select Most Compatible Mode

Once you open the Formats settings, change the setting from High Efficiency to Most Compatible.

most compatible mode iphone

This will make sure that photos captured in the future are stored as JPEGs, so moving files from your iPhone to PC will be much faster.

As the settings here mention, 4K and 60fps videos will still be saved in the HEIC format as this method of filming uses a lot of space. While this may seem annoying, you won’t have much available space on your iPhone for long if you shoot 4K videos without HEIC.

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Related: How to Find Downloaded Files and Photos on an iPhone

Are HEIC Photos Better Than JPEG?

While most computers can easily recognize JPEG images, Apple chooses to use HEIC files instead by default. The main difference is that HEIC photos save space and save extra photo details that JPEGs don’t.

While not widely used now, it’s possible that HEIC will be a more common photo format in the future, so Apple is thinking ahead. After all, we should expect this type of behavior from Apple. Apple is the company that removed the headphone jack before Bluetooth headphones were commonplace. Now, Bluetooth headphones are the standard headphones.

While an inconvenience in the present, HEIC photos might be useful in the future. But, for now, you can still save your photos in JPEG format with no reduction in quality.


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