As I mentioned I have an and of 2013 year P version no spots so far. My 1st 2 sets had spots & were replaced. You might want to consider getting the square trade warranty before the yor 1year is up. You can still get it if you go to then through Vizio's site. If you go directly to Square Trades site they say you have to do it within 1 month of purchase. Vizio worked out a deal with them evidentely.
Do you have the Q or an older with spots? I have a P versionmade in nov 2013. It was a new replacement. Got it in week 1 so I'm at about 3 1/2 months of use with no spots. I'll bet that if you have an older set & don't have spots that Vizio will claim it's not a problem. Good luck. Let us know what they say if you. Call them.
I don't know of any issue but you could try taking the back off & looking for a loose conection. When you said you could keep it, did Squaretrade refund your purchase price? If not, what was the deal? I'm curious because I have their warranty and haven't heard of anyone dealing with them yet.
If you call Vizio after the 90 days but before 1 year they will repair it if possible but if it's a panel defect they will replace it. In the case of us E701I owners with the bright stuck pixel problem the vast majority got brand new sets as replacements.
Isn't this the same argument we've had about720 vs 1080? Basically you won't see any difference unless you sit 2 feet from your 80" tv, of course then you have to worry about whiplash trying to see everything.