HEIF (High efficiency image format) as known as H.265 and MPEG-H Part 2 was introduced to iOS 11, and to later macOS 10.13.4 on March 29, 2018. It's been less than a year and support has rolled out at a reasonable pace. I've elected not to list HEVC (High efficiency video codec) itself, as it is housed the .mov container format and most video applications using Mac OS's internal video engine will support it. Also, open source libraries like ffmpeg have added support for HEVC. The .heic (HEIF) file format is a much bigger grab bag from my experience. Many video applications now support HEIC such as Premiere / Final Cut Pro / Motion / DaVinci Resolve hence they are on this list.

I've tried to compile a complete list of known applications that handle HEIC. Undoubtedly I'm missing a few so if anyone has any others I'm not listing, feel free to let me know. Moving forward, .heic support is likely to be assumed. Notably, Affinity Photo on the desktop doesn't support HEIC (yet). I'll try to maintain this list at least until the one year anniversary if not a bit longer.


  • Preview (macOS 10.13+)
  • Lightroom CC 1.4+, LightRoom CC 7.4+ (macOS 10.13+)
  • ImageMagick (macOS 10.13+)
  • Graphics Converter 10.4.3+ (macOS 10.13+)
  • Pixelmator/Pixelmator Pro (macOS 10.13+)
  • Acorn 6+ (macOS 10.13+)
  • Omnigraffle (macOS 10.13+)
  • Sketch (macOS 10.13+)
  • Adobe Photoshop Elements 2019
  • Adobe Photoshop CC 2018+
  • Adobe Premiere Elements 2019
  • Adobe Premiere CC 2018+
  • Apple Pages (macOS 10.13+ warns about possible iPad support)
  • Apple Keynote (macOS 10.13+ warns about possible iPad support)
  • Apple Final Cut Pro (macOS 10.13+)
  • Apple Motion (macOS 10.13+)
  • Apple Compressor 4.4 (macOS 10.13+)
  • DaVinci Resolve 15+ (macOS 10.13+)


This list is incomplete

  • Preview (macOS 10.13+)
  • ImageMagick (macOS 10.13+)
  • Graphics Converter 10.4.3+ (macOS 10.13+)
  • Pixelmator/Pixelmator Pro (macOS 10.13+)

Browser Support


HEIC surprisingly is not supported by Safari. Seeing as the HEIV/HEIF family is part of the MPEG group, the patents likely will likely limit its adoption. H.264 wasn't widely supported by holdouts like Mozilla until Cisco bought the patent and made it open.

HEIF still is mostly treated as an intermediate format. Transferring HEIF from iOS to macOS with a Mac running a compatible OS will transfer images as HEIF. HEIF has expanded quite a bit since landing on Mac OS. Windows users are left hanging with the Adobe suite outside of Lightroom. For avant-garde browser-supported formats, see Getting started with Webp, JPEG2000, and JPEG-XR.