How to Fix When Shutterfly Doesn’t Support HEIC Image File Format

Key Takeaways

  • Shutterfly supports HEIC/HEIF image formats, but only through its iOS app, website, and mobile web uploads
  • To upload HEIC photos from other devices, you need to convert them to JPG or another compatible format
  • There are several easy methods to convert HEIC to JPG, including using built-in tools on iPhone/Mac or free online converters

As an experienced technical writer with expertise in photography and image formats, I understand the frustration of dealing with compatibility issues when uploading photos to online services like Shutterfly. The HEIC (High-Efficiency Image Container) format, while offering superior compression and quality, is still relatively new and not universally supported across all platforms and applications.

Shutterfly, a popular online photo printing service, has recognized the growing adoption of HEIC and now supports the format for uploads through its iOS app, website, and mobile web. However, if you’re attempting to upload HEIC images from other devices or sources, you may encounter compatibility issues, as Shutterfly doesn’t natively support the format in those cases.

Don’t worry, though! In this article, I’ll guide you through several simple methods to overcome this hurdle and ensure your HEIC photos are compatible with Shutterfly’s upload requirements.

Understanding HEIC and Its Compatibility Challenges

Before we dive into the solutions, let’s briefly understand what HEIC is and why compatibility issues arise.

HEIC is a modern image format introduced by Apple in 2017 with the release of iOS 11. It uses advanced compression techniques to achieve smaller file sizes without compromising image quality significantly. While HEIC offers several advantages over traditional formats like JPEG, its adoption has been gradual, leading to compatibility challenges with older software and services that don’t yet support the format natively.

Does Shutterfly Support HEIC?

Yes, Shutterfly does support HEIC and HEIF (High-Efficiency Image File Format) image formats, but with a caveat. According to their website, HEIC and HEIF files are only accepted via the iOS app, website, and mobile web uploads. During the upload process, these files are automatically converted to JPG format.

However, if you’re attempting to upload HEIC images from other sources, such as your computer or an Android device, Shutterfly may not recognize the format, leading to upload failures or errors.

How to Fix HEIC Not Supported by Shutterfly

If you encounter issues uploading HEIC photos to Shutterfly from non-iOS devices, don’t worry! Here are several methods you can use to convert your HEIC images to a compatible format like JPG before uploading them to Shutterfly.

Method 1: Convert HEIC to JPG on iPhone Using the Files App

One of the easiest ways to convert HEIC images to JPG is to use the built-in Files app on your iPhone. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Photos app on your iPhone and select the HEIC images you want to convert.
  2. Tap the Share button and choose “Copy Photos.”
  3. Open the Files app and navigate to a folder where you want to save the converted JPG files.
  4. Tap and hold in the blank area of the folder, then select “Paste.”

Your HEIC images will now be converted to JPG format and saved in the selected folder. You can then upload these JPG files to Shutterfly without any compatibility issues.

Method 2: Convert HEIC to JPG on Mac Using Preview

If you’re a Mac user, you can easily convert HEIC images to JPG using the built-in Preview app. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the HEIC image you want to convert in Preview.
  2. Go to File > Export.
  3. In the Export window, select “JPEG” from the “Format” dropdown menu.
  4. Choose a location to save the converted JPG file and click “Save.”

Repeat this process for each HEIC image you need to convert, or select multiple images at once in the Finder and open them in Preview to convert them in a batch.

Method 3: Use Online HEIC to JPG Converters

If you prefer not to install any additional software, you can take advantage of free online HEIC to JPG converters. These web-based tools allow you to upload your HEIC images, convert them to JPG format, and then download the converted files to your computer.

Here are a few popular online HEIC to JPG converters you can try:

Simply visit the website, upload your HEIC files, and follow the instructions to download the converted JPG images. Keep in mind that online converters may have file size or quantity limitations, so they may not be suitable for large batches of images.

Method 4: Use Desktop HEIC Conversion Software (Windows/Mac)

If you prefer a more robust solution or need to convert a large number of HEIC images, you can consider using dedicated desktop software for HEIC conversion. These applications typically offer batch conversion capabilities, advanced settings, and additional features.

Here are a few popular HEIC conversion software options:

  • CopyTrans HEIC for Windows (Windows)
  • iMazing HEIC Converter (Windows/Mac)
  • HEIC Converter by FoneTool (Windows/Mac)

While some of these tools are free for personal use, others may require a paid license or subscription. Be sure to research and choose an option that best suits your needs and budget.

Preserving Image Quality and Transparency

When converting HEIC to JPG, it’s important to note that while the overall image quality should remain high, there may be some minor differences or loss of transparency compared to the original HEIC file.

HEIC supports transparency and alpha channels, which allow for seamless blending of images with transparent backgrounds. However, the JPG format doesn’t natively support transparency, so any transparent areas in your HEIC images may be filled with a solid color (usually white) when converted to JPG.

If preserving transparency is crucial for your use case, you may want to consider alternative image formats like PNG, which supports transparency but may result in larger file sizes.


While Shutterfly’s support for HEIC is currently limited to specific upload methods, there are several easy workarounds to ensure your HEIC photos are compatible with the service. By converting your HEIC images to JPG format using the methods outlined in this article, you can seamlessly upload and print your precious memories through Shutterfly without any compatibility issues.

Whether you prefer the convenience of built-in tools on your iPhone or Mac, the flexibility of online converters, or the power of dedicated desktop software, there’s a solution to fit your needs and workflow. So, don’t let the HEIC format hold you back – embrace the future of image formats while ensuring compatibility with your favorite photo printing services like Shutterfly.