What is HEIC?

What is heic file format?

What is HEIC?
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HEIC file types are images commonly used on Apple devices

HEIC, or High Efficiency Image Format, is a modern type of image file used to store pictures on electronic devices like smartphones and computers. It's a new and improved way of saving photos because it makes them take up less space while keeping the quality high.

This means you can store more photos on your device without using up too much storage. HEIC files work great for capturing memories, sharing photos with friends and family, and keeping your device running smoothly.

HEIC is commonly used on Apple devices like iPhones and iPads, as well as on newer versions of macOS. Many other devices and operating systems also support HEIC, but compatibility may vary depending on the device and software version. While it's a great format, some devices and apps might not support it yet, so you might need to convert your HEIC photos to a different format like JPEG for wider compatibility. Overall, HEIC is a convenient and efficient way to store and share your photos in today's digital age.

Images in HEIC Files

In a HEIC file, you can store numerous images, each assigned specific roles for differentiation. A single image may assume multiple roles simultaneously.

Role Description Role and description
Cover image

Cover image

A cover image serves as a representative visual for the image items and sequence tracks within the file. It's the default display when no other preference is specified for showcasing image items. Each file can only contain one designated cover image.
Thumbnail image

Thumbnail image

A lower-resolution version of the main image.
Auxiliary image

Auxiliary image

An accompanying image to a master image, such as an alpha plane or a depth map. While it aids in displaying the master image, it's not usually shown itself.
Master image

Master image

An image other than a thumbnail or auxiliary image, typically representing a full-resolution displayable image.
Coded image

Coded image

A digitally encoded representation of an image.
Pre-derived coded image

Pre-derived coded image

An encoded image produced from other images, like a high dynamic range image created from a set of exposure-bracketed images.
Derived image

Derived image

An image represented in a file through a specified operation applied to indicated input images, retrievable by executing the indicated operation on the specified input images.
Hidden image

Hidden image

An image designated not for display, yet included in the file, perhaps as an input image for a derived image.

Image metadata

HEIC files support metadata storage associated with images and image sequences, including integrity checks, EXIF or XMP data, and MPEG-7 metadata. Metadata for image items is stored as a metadata item, referencing related image items with a 'cdsc' item reference. Timed metadata tracks in image sequences can refer to an image sequence track with a 'cdsc' track reference.

Read more about HEIC metadata.

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