Four cars, including the two frontrunning Mercedes, failed to complete a timed lap in the third free practice session during the last grand prix weekend at Shanghai.
Most other cars did fewer than 10 laps across the 90-minute session, with Max Chilton's Marussia clocking the most at just 13 in total.
Hamilton believes the sport should find ways to ensure fans who turn up to the races are seeing more cars on track for more of the time.
He advocated extending the allocation of extra tyres that has been introduced for practice one this year, or freeing up engine mileage.
"I have sympathy for the people watching maybe just one car going round for the first half an hour - I think it can be managed a bit better," Hamilton said.
"When I used to turn on Formula 1 I wanted to see people driving around.
"Now I'm among the drivers, when you come into the garage and don't go out I can just imagine [what that's like for the fans].
"We can't have too much mileage on the engine so you're limited to almost 15 or 16 laps in the one session.
"We almost need a free engine and we'd be bolting around; we'd get 30 or 40 laps at least in each session.
"I think it would be good fun for the fans to see, and good for development."
- Sports & Recreation
- Motor Racing
- Max Chilton