The coronavirus pandemic has moved all teaching, learning, and test taking online. However, there have been some hiccups with the Advanced Placement (AP) exams for US high school students. Those with iPhones have been failing the test because the College Board’s portal doesn’t support HEIC image format.
Here’s an interesting twist of fate. Google Photos used to offer free unlimited original quality photo backup for the Pixel phones as a perk of owning one of the devices. This courtesy, apparently, hasn’t been extended to the new Pixel 4 and Pixel 4XL phones. You’ll only be able to save compressed jpg backups to Google Photos on the free unlimited account.
It seems, however, that due to the file sizes offered by Apple’s HEIC/HEVC encoding, Google Photos doesn’t need to compress the files to optimise them for storage. In fact, recompressing them would result in a larger file. So, the original image quality captured by the iPhone is retained with the free unlimited storage on Google Photos.
Other than the dual stabilised cameras, one of the biggest bits of photo news surrounding the new iPhones and iOS11 is HEIC. HEIC is a High Efficiency Image File Format. Essentially this means it can hold a lot of data in a relatively small amount of space. For mobile users with limited storage, it’s fantastic. But, right now, there aren’t really any desktop apps that fully support it – at least on Windows.
Desktop support will probably be coming at some point in the future. For now, though, this handy web based converter is stepping in to fill the need. Heictojpg is an online converter into which you feed your iOS11 HEIC files, and you get nice, friendly, and compatible JPG files in return.