Effortlessly Access and Convert HEIC Files on Windows to JPEG Format

HEIC Files—a term you might stumble upon when transferring photos from your iPhone to a PC. Though they boast superior compression without compromising quality, HEIC files can throw a curveball to the uninitiated Windows user. Yet, don’t let this modern format intimidate you. This guide demystifies the process of accessing and converting HEIC files on Windows, ensuring that you can enjoy your high-quality images across all your devices with ease.

Whether you’re a casual photographer or a tech enthusiast, unlocking the potential of HEIC files will streamline your digital media management and save you invaluable disk space. Let’s dive into the simple steps to transform HEIC files to the more familiar JPEG format, opening up a world of possibilities.

What is a HEIC File?

High Efficiency Image File Format (HEIC) is the brainchild of the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) and was popularized by Apple in 2017 with the introduction of iOS 11. The .heic file format is known for its ability to maintain high-quality images while significantly reducing file size compared to traditional JPEG files. This efficiency makes HEIC an excellent choice for saving storage space and maintaining image quality, especially on devices with limited capacity.

How to View HEIC Files in Windows 11 Photos App

For Windows 11 users, viewing HEIC files directly through the Windows Photos app requires a simple setup. Initially, Windows may not natively support .heic files, but by downloading the HEIF Image Extensions from the Microsoft Store, users can enable this feature. Once installed, opening a HEIC file becomes as straightforward as double-clicking on it, just as one would with a JPEG file.

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How to Convert HEIC to JPEG or PNG on Windows

To convert HEIC files to JPEG or PNG on a Windows PC, follow these detailed steps:

Using Built-in Photos App in Windows

Step 1: Open the HEIC File

  • Navigate to the folder containing your HEIC file.
  • Double-click the HEIC file to open it in the Windows Photos app. If you haven’t already, you may need to download the HEIF Image Extensions from the Microsoft Store to enable HEIC support in the Photos app.

Step 2: Convert and Save

  • With the image open in the Photos app, click on Edit & Create on the top right corner of the screen.
  • Select Edit from the dropdown menu.
  • In the editing window, after making any desired adjustments, click Save a copy (make sure to select JPEG or PNG as the output format before saving).

Using Third-Party Software

Step 1: Install a Conversion Tool

  • Download and install a HEIC to JPEG/PNG converter such as iMazing HEIC Converter or CopyTrans HEIC for Windows from their respective websites or the Microsoft Store.

Step 2: Convert using iMazing HEIC Converter

  • Launch iMazing HEIC Converter.
  • Drop your HEIC files into the converter using a simple drag-and-drop method.
  • Select the output format as JPEG or PNG, adjust quality settings if necessary, and click Convert.
  • Select the target directory to store the converted files securely.

Using Online Tools

Step 1: Access an Online Converter

  • Open a web browser and navigate to an online conversion tool like Online-Convert.com.

Step 2: Convert the Files

  • Click on the Choose Files button to upload your HEIC files.
  • Set the target format to JPEG or PNG.
  • Click on Start conversion.
  • Once the conversion process is complete, download the converted files to your computer.

Alternative Applications

Step 1: Using GIMP

  • Open GIMP and install the necessary plugin to support HEIC files if it’s not already installed.
  • Open your HEIC file via File > Open.
  • Navigate to File > Export As.
  • Choose JPEG or PNG as the output format and click Export.

By following these steps, you can efficiently convert HEIC files to JPEG or PNG format on Windows, using the built-in Photos app, third-party software, online tools, or alternative applications. This versatility ensures that you can always access and use your images in the desired format.

How to Open HEIC Images in Alternative Applications

For those who prefer using software other than the Windows Photos app, several alternative applications can open HEIC files. Adobe Photoshop, for instance, has added support for HEIC files. Users can simply update Photoshop to the latest version to ensure compatibility. Another robust option is GIMP, a free and open-source image editor that supports HEIC through a plugin. This flexibility allows users to handle HEIC files in a software environment they are already familiar with.

How to Convert HEIC Files to JPEG/PNG Format on the Web

For users who prefer not to install any software for converting HEIC files, online converters offer a convenient solution. Websites like heictojpg.com provide free services where users can upload their HEIC files and convert them to JPEG or PNG format in a few clicks. This method is particularly useful for users who need to convert files occasionally or are using devices with limited ability to install software.


While HEIC offers numerous advantages in terms of storage and image quality, the need for compatibility and flexibility in file formats is paramount. Windows users have several options to view and convert HEIC files, ensuring that they can enjoy the benefits of HEIC without being bound by format limitations. Whether through native apps, third-party software, or online services, converting HEIC files to more universally accepted formats like JPEG or PNG is straightforward and accessible.

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