How to Open and Convert HEIC File in Photoshop

James Davis

Apr 17, 2023 • Filed to: Manage Device Data • Proven solutions


The HEIC format was created in 2001 to provide an alternative to other digital formats. However, it only became popular in 2017 when Apple utilized its capabilities. The HEIC format is popular because it occupies less storage space than JPG and provides high-quality images.

As HEIC has been developed for non-destructive image editing, it is not compatible with many operating systems. Therefore, you would be able to open HEIC in photoshop, but you cannot save your file in the same format.

If you want to learn how to open a HEIC file in Photoshop and convert it to JPG, our guide has you covered. Read on to become an expert editor.

What Is HEIC File?

what is heic

The MPEG group developed the HEIC file format in 2001 to provide a better alternative for file storage. HEIC stands for High-Efficiency Image File Container. It is a container format that can store individual digital images and image sequences.

HEIC is the updated variant of HEIF (High-Efficiency Image Format). When you capture an image using your iPad or iPhone, it stores it as a HEIC file. Similarly, capturing live photos or images using dual cameras would save them as HEIC files.

Apple mainly uses the HEIC format to differentiate what it offers its users. Besides, it enables it to provide better and far superior images. Therefore, when you take pictures using an Apple device, they are saved as HEIC and provide better quality than JPG. On top of this, HEIC is a space-saving file format that compresses the size of images to save space.

HEIC files use the HEIC or HEICS extension, depending on how many images are included. There is also metadata in these files, which describes each image to provide more information.

Main Features ·Offers higher image quality.
·Compresses photos to half the size of JPGs.
·Stores both individual and a collection of images.
·Supports the storage of various media including images, audio, and videos.
Application Scenarios ·When you require high-quality images, you will have to choose HEIC. It is ideal for photoshoots.
·If you are short on memory, HEIC is the best option as it takes up minimal space.
·It enables you to capture the action. You can store multiple pictures in a single HEIC file with burst mode and live photos. It is possible to capture action shots of moving objects in real-time.
·Also, you have the option to convert HEIC files to GIFs to create animations from the stored sequence of images.
Pros & Cons Pros
·Reduces the size of images by as much as 50% when compared to JPG.
·Provides high-quality results that no other image format can deliver.
·Allows you to capture Live Photos.
·It stores important information such as the width in pixels, location, height, and time. Besides, HEICs also store image edits which means that you should be able to revert to the original if the need arises.
·It is not compatible with other operating systems. This is because HEIC still has not gained widespread usage. Only Apple users are familiar with the format.
·You might struggle to edit HEIC images on other platforms as it is not accepted by many software and operating systems. Hence, you will have to convert HEIC files if you want them to load in another system.

How to Open HEIC File in Photoshop?

Adobe Photoshop is considered to be the most popular photo editing tool out there. It provides a host of editing features that allow you to transform how a picture looks. After all, you cannot limit what you can do in Photoshop.

Besides, it offers native support for various image formats. However, things are complicated when using the HEIC format. So, if you need to open HEIC in Photoshop on a Mac or Windows computer, here is what you need to do.

  1. Open HEIC File in Photoshop for Mac

Mac users must follow the steps below to open HEIC in Photoshop.

  • The first thing that you need to do is open Photoshop.
  • Then, head over to Camera Raw.
  • Click Edit and Preferences.
  • Now, you have to select Camera Raw.
  • Click File Handling under the JPEG and TIFF Handling section.
  • Next, choose either Automatically open all supported JPGs and HEICs or Automatically open JPGs and HEICs with settings.
  • Finally, you should be able to open your HEIC images in Photoshop.
  1. Open HEIC File in Photoshop for Windows

As for Windows users who have a paid subscription to Photoshop, you have to download the HEIF Image Extension to open HEIC in Photoshop. The following steps will enable you to open HEIC files in no time.

  • Head over to Microsoft Store and download a HEIC support tool.
  • Once you have installed the HEIF Image Extension, you must restart Photoshop.
  • Then, you need to open Photoshop and import the HEIC file.
  • Lastly, you should be able to edit the image as desired.

How to Convert HEIC to JPG in Photoshop?

convert heic in photoshop

For those of you who are interested in HEIC to JPG Photoshop conversion, you will be delighted to know that it is elementary to convert the file in the desired format. All you need to do is open Photoshop and proceed with the following.

  • Import HEIC images to Photoshop.
  • Edit the images if required.
  • Then, you need to click Save As JPG.
  • That is about it. The file will be saved in the desired location.

You will have to follow the steps mentioned above for each image. Unfortunately, this means that there is no option for bulk conversion. Hence, it will take you some time to convert the images.


  1. Is There a Free HEIC Converter Online?

heic online converter

Yes, Wondershare HEIC Online Converter is an excellent tool that you can use to convert all your HEIC files to JPG quickly. It has been designed to provide ease and the ultimate convenience. Even if you have never used a conversion tool, you should experience no difficulty when using it.

The main reason why Wondershare HEIC Online Converter has become incredibly popular is that it requires minimal effort. You should be able to use it to convert all your HEIC files to JPG in no time. Besides, you only have to follow three steps, as mentioned below, to complete the conversion.

  • Upload the HEIC file that you want to convert to JPG.
  • Then, wait for the conversion process to be completed.
  • Finally, download the JPG file to your device.

Moreover, Wondershare HEIC Online Converter even allows bulk conversion. This means that you can convert all your files without having to wait. Furthermore, it converts up to 10 HEIC files at a time. Hence, you can rely on it for all your needs.

  1. Why Can't Photoshop Open HEIC file?

error to open heic

There is no specific reason why Photoshop doesn't directly open HEIC files. However, it is possible that Adobe does not want to pay any royalties to MPEG. Besides, you can simply utilize free tools such as a HEIC extension to open HEIC files on Photoshop.

  1. Is HEIC Format Better than Others?

If you are wondering whether the HEIC format is better than other formats, you should know that it all comes down to quality and compatibility. It does stand out when it comes to quality. However, it is not as widely compatible as of yet. Therefore, it is an excellent option if you use the format to capture images.

On the other hand, if you need to share images with others, you might experience some difficulties and would be better off with JPG or another format. This is why you must consider your needs when deciding which image format to use.

The Bottom Line

Now, you will know how to open HEIC in Photoshop. Adobe Photoshop is a powerful tool widely used to edit images and videos. You should be able to use an extension to open HEIC files in Photoshop. But it will require some patience on your part.

However, if you want greater convenience, you should use Wondershare HEIC Online Converter. It allows you to convert HEIC files to JPG in bulk quickly. If you are short on time or want a reliable option for converting HEIC files, you will have to try it. You will be amazed by what the tool can do for you.

James Davis

James Davis

staff Editor

Home > How-to > Manage Device Data > How to Open and Convert HEIC File in Photoshop