There are various reasons someone may ask you for the time but the most common one has to be because they don’t have a smartphone.
You don’t need a watch if you own a mobile phone. Some people wear watches just for the aesthetic and forget it’s there even when they need to know the time.
Asking for time today is scarce. It almost feels like a trick. ‘Is this random person asking me for the time because he/she wants something else from me?’ Maybe it’s paranoia but it still feels weird, like someone asking you for directions or to fax something.
We live in a algorithmic world where information is virtually ambient. Amazon knows what we want to buy and need to restock and Google knows what we want to search before we finish typing. Asking for the time feels so behind the times.