Download Play has been a positive feature since it was introduced in the DS family of handhelds, especially for those that don't have an internet connection or in some games where only one game cart is needed for multiple people to play. Many of us may not use it that often, but it's an extra that shows Nintendo's devotion to playing with others in the same room.
One big drawback, however, is the fact that you can probably complete a complex problem of advanced mathematics in the time it takes two systems to connect and exchange relevant data. While that may be an exaggeration, a new patent filed by Nintendo suggests that the company is keen to improve the service on 3DS. According to the plans, Download Play may be updated so that when data is downloaded from the 'master' 3DS, the receiving handheld will actually store it on the SD card and retain it, rather than wipe it when play is finished. It'll only be accessible the next time you play the game in the same way with a master copy, but it means that the second time around it will load up right away.
The patent also suggests that system updates could be shared through Download Play, allowing 3DS owners without internet access of their own to potentially update firmware from a friend's system.
It seems that Download Play waiting woes may come to an end in a future update, which can only be a good thing.