|Alliance for Open Media
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What is an AVIF file?
In 2015, several high-profile tech companies, including Amazon, Cisco, Google, Intel, Microsoft, Mozilla, and Netflix, formed the Alliance for Open Media. This non-profit workgroup began developing several open-source media technologies and standards, including the AV1 video codec.
Eventually, the workgroup realized that the AV1 codec could be applied to images saved in the .HEIF file format. This allowed the workgroup to create the AV1 Image File Format, which can be used to save high-quality, compressed images within files that are the same size as lower-quality JPEGs. Notably, AVIF files contain less blocking, blurriness, and other visual distortions than similarly-sized JPEGs.
In the early 2020s, many companies began using AVIF files and adding support for the AVIF format. Notably, Netflix has begun using AVIF files internally, and Google has added AVIF support to Android 12 and the Chrome web browser. Microsoft has also provided users with a codec that can be used to view AVIF images in programs like Microsoft Paint.
How to open an AVIF file
You can open an AVIF file with Google Chrome, Apple Preview, Adobe Photoshop, qView, and several other image viewers. Windows users can open AVIF files with Microsoft Paint or Microsoft Photos, but must first install the AV1 Video Extension.
Advanced users can use the open-source libavif library to encode and decode AVIF images.
How to convert an AVIF file
With the AV1 Video Extension installed, Windows users can use Microsoft Paint to convert AVIF images to the following formats:
- .BMP - Bitmap Image
- .JPG - JPEG Image
- .GIF - Graphical Interchange Format
- .TIFF - Tagged Image File Format
- .PNG - Portable Network Graphic
- .HEIC - High Efficiency Image Format