Is JPG the Same as JPEG? Nope. What to Know

Whether you’re building your website or storing valuable photos on your computer, choosing the correct image file format can be difficult. Two of the most common files we use for images include .jpg and .jpeg. However, do you know the differences between these file types?

Choosing the correct file format for your images can speed up your website loading times or save precious storage space on your hard drive. Fortunately, knowing which type you should use is easier than you may think.

In this article, we’ll look at the differences between .jpg and .jpeg so that you can determine which image file type serves your needs better. So, let’s get started!

What is JPEG?

JPEG stands for three different things. Let’s take a look at each classification in detail!

JPEG is the Joint Photographic Experts Group

First, JPEG is an abbreviation for the Joint Photographic Experts Group:

Although JPEG was first widely used starting in 1992, the file format has a long history. In 1983, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) worked on different ways to add photo-quality graphics to computer screens.

ISO is made up of a voluntary group of members from over 160 countries. It is considered the world’s largest standards developer. Furthermore, it creates documents that give specifications, requirements, guidelines, or characteristics. These elements all ensure that all services, products, processes, and materials serve their intended purposes.

To give consumers the highest quality photos, the Joint Photographic Experts Group was formed. It created a new standard that would revolutionize images: the JPEG standard. 

One of JPEG’s highlights is that it uses data compression to keep pictures and graphic files small. Let’s take a closer look at how that process works. 

JPEG is a Kind of Lossy Compression

JPEG also refers to JPEG lossy compression. This process permanently reduces the file size by eliminating redundant information in the image. In this way, the quality of the photo doesn’t usually visibly suffer. 

During the compression process, the pixels are compared to other surrounding pixels in a ratio ranging from 2:1 to 100:1. Therefore, all the pixels that are the same as the original are deleted. Ultimately, you can determine the final size and quality trade-off during the compression process. 

Lossy compression is beneficial because it can increase your overall website performance. 

Consider if you uploaded a full-size image to your website. It would significantly slow down the speed and performance of your pages. 

You can improve your overall website performance by choosing WordPress optimized hosting such as WP Engine. However, visitors are 32 percent more likely to bounce if your page takes just three seconds to load. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to keep your website as speedy as possible. 

With JPEG, you can optimize your images in the best way possible by reducing their file sizes without sacrificing quality. Therefore, you can offer better loading times and an improved user experience.  

JPEG is a File Format

Finally, JPEG is a file format that stores digital images. It looks like .jpeg in this presentation. 

Many people are familiar with .jpeg because it’s one of the top file format choices whenever you save an image:

Nowadays, people use JPEG images in many ways, both online and offline. For example, these pictures tend to be vibrantly colored and easy to edit. Therefore, JPEG photos are ideal for digital marketing materials

What Is JPG?

JPEG and JPG are the same. The only difference between them is that JPEG has one extra letter. So why is there such confusion when talking about the same thing?

The JPEG file format was designed during a time when file types could only have three-letter extensions. More specifically, this was when people still used the earlier versions of Windows, MS-DOS 8.3, and FAT-16 file systems. In this way, .jpeg was shortened to .jpg.

However, only Windows and DOS had this limitation. Even in its early days, UNIX and MAC users often encountered the .jpeg file extension. In time, newer versions of Windows finally accepted more characters in file extensions. Therefore, they began using .jpeg in addition to .jpg

Here’s the JPG file extension looks like:

By default, JPEG and JPG are used by the majority of editing programs. It’s possible to convert the extension either way, and the image will remain the same. 

The file extension .jpg was only born out of necessity and limitation. Still, it is now the most common format used, even compared to JPEG and PNG. 

Whether you prefer to call it a JPG file or a JPEG file, these types of images have transformed the digital world. They enable people to reduce the sizes of images quickly and conveniently to make them more suitable for online viewing. 

What Are the Similarities Between JPG and JPEG?

If you want to add images to your website, you are probably curious about the similarities between JPG and JPEG. As highlighted in the previous section, both are the same file formats. You can use them for all editing and uploading purposes. 

Both Are Types of Raster Images

Computer images can either be vector or raster. Raster graphics are bitmaps of images. This term refers to a grid of pixels that create the whole image when combined.

Therefore, a raster image is the sum of countless pixels of colors in a specific shade. When you put all these pixels together, the whole image becomes clear:

Raster images are best suited to photographs, detailed graphics, scanned artwork, and other types of non-lined images. Also, keep in mind that they are the most common images on the internet.

The biggest downfall of raster images is that they become grainy when enlarged. The individual squares also become visible. Therefore, you should avoid enlarging JPG and JPEG images if you want them to retain their high quality. 

Both Stand for Joint Photographic Experts Group

In the previous section, we explained that JPEG stands for Joint Photographic Experts Group. Despite missing one letter, JGP is also an abbreviation for the ISO sub-committee. Therefore, you can use the acronyms interchangeably. 

You Can Use Both Files for the Same Types of Images

JPEG and JPG are arguably the best file formats for digital photography. As such, it should come as no surprise that almost every image you see on the internet uses this format. Even your phone camera probably uses this file type. 

Digital photographs are known for their incredible detail and amazing color. These qualities come from saving them as JPG or JPEG raster files. So if you have a WordPress website, you can optimize your images by saving them as JPEGs for optimum quality and load times.  

Both Lose Some of Their Quality When You Save Them

Despite their usefulness, JPEG and JPG images also have their downsides. For example, lossy compression can reduce the image quality if you significantly increase or decrease the file size. 

Aside from that, your file size will also be smaller than the original one. As long as you don’t make significant changes to the size of the photo, the quality of your image will remain intact. 

What Are the Differences Between JPG vs. JPEG?

When it comes to JPG vs JPEG, there is no difference apart from the number of characters contained in the name. Considering this, you can choose .jpg or .jpeg as your file type without affecting the image quality. 

How to Convert Image Files to JPG (2 Methods)

Are you wondering how to convert image files to JPG? The process is pretty straightforward. Here are some common methods you can use to do it!

1. Microsoft Paint

If your computer is running on Windows, you can use Microsoft Paint to convert image files into JPEG. The application is free and should come automatically installed on your computer. Furthermore, the software is easy to use. 

Open the image in Paint and then click on File > Save As > JPEG Picture:

Alternatively, you can select Save as. Doing this will bring up a new window.

Choose where you want to save your image and rename it if needed. Then, click on Save as type and choose JPEG from the dropdown menu:

When you’re happy with your selection, click on Save. You’ll now have a .jpg version of your image. 

2. Online Converter Tools

There are many ways you can convert images to JPG online. One of the most popular online converters is FileZigZag

To convert an image using this platform, simply drag and drop the photo or upload it. Then, select JPG or JPEG from the dropdown Target Format menu:

Next, click on Start Converting and download your .jpg image. Alternatively, you can enter your email address and the platform will send the images to your inbox. 

Here are some other platforms you can use instead of FileZigZag:

  • Online UniConverter: This tool converts different files such as videos, images, and audio files for free. It also offers a paid version. 
  • Adapter: This image converter could be great if you are working with batch images. It works on both Windows and macOS. 
  • Simple Image Converter: This platform allows you to convert images between different formats such as PDF, JPEG, PNG, and GIF. 

Alternatively, you can use a professional application such as Adobe Photoshop or Affinity Designer. However, these might not be the most cost-effective solutions unless you need them for other editing purposes. 


As you now know, choosing the right image file type for your WordPress website doesn’t have to be intimidating. You can confidently choose JPG or JPEG interchangeably, as they are the same thing.

The only difference between .jpg and .jpeg stems from early versions of Windows and DOS that limited file extension types to just three letters. Therefore, you can convert your photos into either file format to take advantage of their bright colors and small file sizes. Using JPEG images is just one of the ways you can improve your website load times. By partnering with a host such as WP Engine, you can optimize your entire site for performance. Get in touch to see how we can help you today!

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