What the New HEIF Format Means for You

Apple's HEIC or HEIF new photo format

In 2018 Apple decided to replace traditional JPEG files with a new image format.

HEIF = High Efficiency Image Format

For users with iPhone 6s or later, this HEIF format will now be the default setting for your pictures. Don’t panic! We’re here to help you understand how it all works and what this change means for you.


JPEG’s have been around since 1992. That’s a long time! Fast forward 26 years and image and video quality have improved significantly. Since higher quality is today’s standard, the space on our devices is filling up a lot faster. With HEIF, your digital photographs will be saved as smaller files without compromising the quality of your images.

Translation: you get the same high-quality photos but they take up less space on your device. Who wouldn’t want that? Right, but just like VHS tapes from the 90’s, we can’t read it the without the “player”.

When sharing photos with non-iPhone users or other sites, you may find that they can’t access your photos because they don’t have the “player” to read the HEIF file type.

We recommend that you switch to the JPEG format until this file type becomes more universal.

How to change iPhone photo settings to standard JPEG

On your iPhone go to Settings > Camera > Formats and select Most Compatible. 

Apple's HEIC or HEIF new photo format
my apologies for the inconsistent audio- 2020 was a hard year 🙂


At Persnickety we want you to trust us with all of your photo needs. Why Print? Technology is moving more quickly than ever, let’s hope we can read and access a JPEG format in 20 more years. A Persnickety Print will last forever, without worrying about digital image conversion.

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