After exploring the possibilities of a tablet-console as the Wii´s successor, I know reach another conclusion: Why not introduce this right now? The idea is as simple as effective: Use a NDS or 3DS to connect to the Wii while playing a game, thus storing all gauges, all on-screen data, to the handheld-screen, resulting in a pure, aesthetic picture on your tv-screen.
It´s not like Nintendo never explored such technology. The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords comes to mind, or the optional connectivity-feature in The Wind Waker. Even Square Enix´ Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles made great use of it. These games didn´t do it for visual purposes, but it shows that this kind of feature isn´t something far-fetched, something unknown. It´s just something that currently noone makes use of.
But it would go beyond just cleaning up the big screen. As Ocarina of Time 3D shows, even a typical console-game can be made much more comfortable by having instant-access to an item-menu all the time, without having to either pause the game or clumsily switch through items with, for example, the d-pad. As I went into detail in another article, such selectivity could completely change the way we experience video games. No, it probably wouldn´t be a necessary feature for multiplayer-games (though even then, constantly keeping track of your kill score and rank seems nice), but as for more complex singleplayer-titles, I feel like having a small device that´s exclusively used for all the stuff that otherwise reminds you of playing a game would greatly enhance the overall-experience. And it wouldn´t only free up the tv-screen, it´d even feel like a more logical part of the game. Simple, but important example: The map. Imagine playing a Grand Theft Auto-game. Normally , you have a small circle-map floating atop the screen or you have to pause and watch it in the menu. If, instead, you had a 3DS connected to the console, the map would be displayed on the handheld´s screen. And you´d grab and watch the map just like you would in reality when using your smartphone´s GPS-function. Or think of stuff like in-game phone calls.
The GameCube-GBA-connectivity seems to have burned into people´s heads as something negative, and admittedly, it sucked. It sucked, because it relied on games that required all your friends to possess that handheld, which just didn´t work if not all of your buddies were gamers. But that´s not a problem anymore with both online-play having become a normal part of gaming and the missed out idea of using connectivity for singleplayer-experiences. It´s not like I expect Nintendo to pop out that feature out of the blue, since it´s just something I though of today. But if the Wii-successor takes a step towards the tablet-idea, then it´d be a great way to market the new home console by introducing part of its feature long before through handheld-connectivity. Death to gauges and awkward item-switching!