How to Set Your iPhone’s Camera Back to Saving Photos as JPEG in iOS 11

Posted in How To, iPhone on 06/10/2017 by Chris Hauk

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With the release of iOS 11, the Camera app now defaults to saving photos in the new space-saving High Efficiency Image Format (HEIF). This is great for folks with crowded iPhone storage.

However, the new format isn’t compatible with all iOS and macOS image editing apps. Luckily, there is a way to tell your iPhone to save your photos as JPEGs. Here’s how to go old-school with your photo format.

(UPDATE): This feature is only available on 2017 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone Plus 8, and iPhone X.

How to Set Your iPhone’s Camera Back to Saving Photos as JPEG

How to Set Your iPhone's Camera Back to Saving Photos as JPEG in iOS 11

  1. Open the “Settings” app on your iPhone and tap the “Camera” menu option.
  2. Tap the “Formats” menu selection, and then tap “Most Compatible” to tell the iPhone camera to save your photos in the old JPEG format.
  3. Exit the Settings app.

“Most Compatible” will save all iPhone images as JPEG files. The files will also be copied as JPEG files, making it a bit easier to send and share photos with other users.

For more tips and tricks that can help you make better use of your Mac, iOS device, Apple Watch, or Apple TV, be sure to visit the “How To” section of our website.


  • timothyhood

    This seems like a bad idea. People will change this setting and forget to 3ver change it back. Though the comparison may be a little extreme, it’s like shooting in JPEG instead of raw. Until more support is found in software installed on our phones and desktops, the better option would be to export the images to JPEG, an option native to iOS 11. This preserves the advantages of HEIF.

  • Jerry Burg

    You say: “This feature is only available on 2017 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro,
    the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone Plus 8, and iPhone X.”

    I have an iPhone 6s. If I upgrade to IOS 11, does this mean that there is no way to change the format “back” to JPG? Am I stuck with HEIC?

Author

Chris Hauk

MacTrast Senior Editor, and self-described “magnificent bastard,” Chris Hauk owns Phoenix Rising Services and writes for everyone’s favorite “bad movie” website, Big Bad Drive-In.

His first Apple product was an iPod Classic 9 years ago, and he has since added a MacBook Pro, a number of iPads, iPhones, and multiple Apple TVs to his collection.

He lives somewhere in the deep Southern part of America. Yes, he has to pump in both sunshine and the Internet.