AirDrop the HEICs. Get the JPEGs.

Convert HEIC to JPEG for free on your iPhone and iPad. Share photos from your iOS Photo gallery (stored as HEIC files by default) to AirDrop and receive them as JPEGs in your MacOS download folder.

HEICDrop is made for iOS devices (iPhone, iPad and iPod). Please check-out this page, but the web app itself is pretty useless if you are not iOS 14 or higher.

Enable Web Share Level 2

HEIC Drop makes use of the Web Share API (Level 2) to support file sharing. Which is an experimental WebKit feature in iOS 14 and not enabled by default (in iOS 13 and older, it's not supported at all 😭).

To enable it in your settings:
Go to Settings > Safari. Scroll completely down and tap Advanced > Experimental Features. Toggle Web Share API Level 2 on.

Add to Home Screen

Click the share icon share icon in the bottom bar and then Add to Home Screen.

What happens with my data?

This web app works client-side. Your photos are not uploaded or processed on an external server. They won't leave your device unless you decide so by AirDropping them 😀. Besides sharing the photos with AirDrop you can also share to other services installed on your device. This service is provided as is. Please read the disclaimer for more information.

How can I convert HEIC to JPEG?

As always, there are multiple ways to Rome. Below some alternatives for this web app.

Change the default storage format (iOS)

You can go to Settings > Camera > Formats and pick "Most Compatible". Your photos are stored as JPEGs, but you lose the benefits of the HEIC format.

Create a Shortcut (iOS)

You can create a shortcut with the following steps:

  • Media: Select photos (enable select multiple)
  • Media: Convert Image (you can set quality and preserve meta data
  • Sharing: Airdrop

The shortcut can be added to the home screen.

Use Preview to open and export as JPEG (MacOS)

You can just send the .heic to your Mac. Open the file in Preview and Export to JPEG.

Create an Automator workflow Finder Action (MacOS)

You can create an Automator workflow on your Mac and add an action to finder to convert incoming HEIC files. As shown by Wes Bos in this Tweet.

References and credits

Why did you create this tool?

The HEIC format is awesome, but most tools are not accepting the format yet. So it's nice to have an easy and convenient way to convert HEICs to JPEGs.

I got inspired by a tweet from Arvid Kahl in which he mentioned the issues he had with sharing HEIC files. A quick search led to more people who had this issue. I thought it was a nice opportunity to stretch my web design/development muscle again 💪 and make a little utility demo with the Web Share API. The nice thing is that iOS automatically converts HEIC files to JPEG when using the File picker in Safari 🤩. I only had to write some (Vanilla) JavaScript to hook up the files array with the Web Share API.

One problem is that sharing files with Web Share is only supported behind an experimental flag in iOS 14 😞. Luckily Apple announced Web Share level 2 in the beta release notes Safari 15.

If you like to learn how Web Share works, just right-click and Show Page Source to see the source.