Are you like me, kicking yourself for not having snapped up shares of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) before it presented the world with its exciting iPhone in late June?

Check it out. The stock was trading around $100 per share in early May, and last time I checked, it was trading above $140 per share. Can you say 40% in several months? Dang.

If you really want to ride the coattails of this successful product launch, you might still be able to do so. Just look inside the gadget. Because every time someone buys an iPhone, Apple shareholders have a reason to smile. But if you make a coating for the device's display, you should be smiling, too, every time the cash register rings.

At, I found a list of some components of the iPhone and their manufacturers. I don't understand many of them, but they seem to be in there. For example:

  • A Samsung chip, featuring an ARM processor and "two 512 Mbit Mobile DDR SDRAM dice." (Greek to me, but maybe not to you.)
  • A Broadcom (NASDAQ:BRCM) part, "which probably provides the I/O controller used for the video interface to the touch screen."
  • There are two Infineon (NYSE:IFX) parts, providing the phone's "baseband," and a "GSM RF transceiver."
  • A National Semiconductor (NYSE:NSM) "display interface serializer."
  • Micron (NYSE:MU) offers a "2-megapixel CMOS imager."
  • Marvell Technology (NASDAQ:MRVL) provides a wireless connectivity device.
  • Intel wireless flash is also included.

Spend a little time looking into these companies, and you might end up able to add a big winner to your portfolio before others think of it. Last time I checked, for example, National Semiconductor and Micron hadn't seen any major leaps in share price recently (just minor ones).

Buyer beware
Be careful, though, if you're treading in unfamiliar territory. One reason I haven't jumped into such companies is because I don't understand them all that well. Therefore, I don't have a good handle on their competitive strengths, the quality of their technology, their promise of growth, and so on. I don't have a good idea of how well these firms will be faring a few years down the road, and I'm certainly not going to buy them just because they're part of a hot product.

None other than Warren Buffett has repeatedly explained that he steers clear of companies and industries he doesn't understand. It has served him well. Remember, after all, that you can also get rich on other stocks -- those in industries you do understand well, such as perhaps retail, or health care, or transportation.

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Longtime Fool contributor Selena Maranjian does not own shares of any companies mentioned in this article. She doesn't even own an iPhone. Intel is a Motley Fool Inside Value recommendation. Try any one of our investing services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool isFools writing for Fools.