Cutting the Ice steps is technique which is used since years, and rather was invented way before something like crampons came up in mountaineering.
I met a team at Saser Kangri, who spent a lot of time in cutting steps in Ice. And, I could only ask them why to do it and invest so much of amount of energy and critical time when you have crampons?
I believe Ice Cutting is done on a very hard snow. Agreeing to the fact that you can use crampons for an ascend over such a face, but for a team of around 10-15 mountaineers, everybody exerts the same when they choose not to cut ice steps, but if two/three heads go a bit ahead, cutting steps, the team can proceed much faster and rather in a packed approach, like a convoy. In case of bad visibility, the stranded people can track down such steps and follow them rather than looking for something else which is more artificial. I see that as the biggest advantage of doing it.