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Really it's just backwards compatibility with 3.5
There are d20 games that use 10 levels (13th Age) and games that use 30 levels (4th Ed.) but if you look at them you can see that they scale differently.
For example in 13th age with only 10 levels, you get a feat at every level and the caster's spell level is their character level (7th level spells at 7th level).
The obsession with levels is actually a flaw in the game. The problem is level 20 capstones. People want to reach them, but once they reach them they want to make those capstones relevant. So they think, let's add on more levels so we can get more capstones, but we should give a lil' something something to those who want to focus on one build and they add on more capstones. Repeat ad nauseaum.