CopyTrans has launched a free piece of software that brings High Efficiency Image Format (HEIC / HEIF) image support to Windows, enabling PC owners to view the popular new image format that has replaced JPEGs in iOS 11.

Windows doesn't natively support HEIC images at this time, instead receiving JPEG versions of HEIC images when they're transferred from an iOS 11 device. And while we've seen other programs build HEIC support into their own Windows versions, CopyTrans' program is the first to bring native support.

In other words, as CopyTrans software developer Niki Minkov explained to us over email:

That is, when you browse your files with Windows, HEIC files will display thumbnails just as JPEGs, double clicking will display them full size with Windows Picture Viewer, and the right-click-on-file context menu will now include a "Convert to JPEG" feature.

In fact, our plugin is using the same integration technology that Nikon and Canon used to make Windows compatible with their respective RAW formats.

CopyTrans HEIC for Windows also supports Microsoft Office, and it retains the images' original EXIF data.

The HEIC format allows for much smaller file sizes than their JPEG counterparts, enabling a greater number of photos to be saved to a device's built-in storage. Other advantages of the format include the ability to store burst photos, focal stacks, and exposure stacks in a single file, the ability to store image editing operations, and more. Thanks to CopyTrans HEIC, you don't have to give those advantages up just because you own a PC.

To learn more or download the software for yourself, head over to the CopyTrans website.